Andy Murray pulls out of US Open as hip injury flares up
World number two had struggled through Wimbledon with the problem
Andy Murray during a practice session on Saturday ahead of the US Open in New York. The world number two has puled out of the tournament with a hip injury. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
World number two Andy Murray has pulled out of the US Open after failing to recover from a hip injury.
The Scot struggled through Wimbledon with the problem, losing in the quarter-finals to Sam Querrey, but his prospects for Flushing Meadows had looked positive when he travelled to New York last weekend.
However, after a week of practice Murray has decided he is not fit enough to do himself justice.
Murray, who looked close to tears, said: “I did pretty much everything I could to get myself ready here, took a number of weeks off after Wimbledon, spoke to a lot of hip specialists, tried resting, rehabbing to get myself ready here and was practising okay the last few days but it’s too sore for me to win the tournament and ultimately that’s what I was here to try and do, so unfortunately I won’t be playing this year.”
Murray headed to the press conference room after practising with Frenchman Lucas Pouille, and it was apparent on court that he was still limping.
The 30-year-old must now decide what to do moving forward and whether to follow Novak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka and Kei Nishikori, who have all brought their seasons to an early end because of injury.
Murray said he would make a decision “in the next couple of days”, with surgery an option he may now consider.
He has been reluctant to go into detail about the injury, saying at Wimbledon it was something that had affected him on and off for a number of years but never to the extent of this summer’s flare-up.
Murray said: “I certainly wouldn’t have been hurting myself more by trying to play. It was more a question of whether it would settle down in time. I kind of ran out of time.
“I have never had to take any time off because of my hip before, so we were hoping that by taking a few weeks off and resting and rehabbing and really reducing the load that I was putting through it, that I would be okay by the time the US Open came around, but unfortunately that’s not been the case.
“I spoke to a number of specialists about it to get the best advice possible. Obviously when you speak to a lot, there is different views and opinions on what the best thing to do is moving forward, and that’s a decision I’ll need to take now.
“I’ll sit down and decide with my team in the next couple of days, for sure.”
Murray’s withdrawal means five of the top 11 men will not be playing at Flushing Meadows, with Milos Raonic joining the Scot, last year’s champion Wawrinka, runner-up Djokovic and 2014 finalist Nishikori in pulling out.
Wawrinka, Djokovic and Nishikori have followed the example of Roger Federer, who took the final six months of last season off to fully recover from knee surgery and has reaped the benefits this year.
There is no guarantee, of course, that such a strategy will have a similar effect for other players but it can at least offer Murray encouragement that a lengthy break at this stage of his career can be followed by grand slam success.
Murray, who will miss a slam for the first time since the French Open in 2013, said: “If I get myself fit and healthy, there is no reason why I can’t [come back at the same level].
“I have been practising here and been competitive in practice when I’m not moving close to how I can when I’m healthy. Obviously there has been a lot of players with injuries this year. Roger and Rafa [Nadal] last year had a few problems.
“I want to be back on court as soon as I can. If it means that I can play before the end of the year, then that’s what I would love to do. I miss competing, and I’ll try to get myself back on court as soon as I can.
“But obviously I’ll need to make the correct decision and really think it through these next couple of days with my team.”
Murray’s withdrawal means a reshuffling of the men’s draw, with fifth seed Marin Cilic taking over the number two slot and an opening match against American Tennys Sandgren.